YOUR GUIDE TO INTERNET FREEBIES – Lesson 18: 30 – Golden Rules for Dealing with Internet Freebies

nextlesson-internetfreebies

  1. Know what FREEBIES are and offer, know what they are advertising – find out as much as you can BEFORE signing up. READ THE FINE PRINT or ASK A QUESTION.
  1. TOTALLY FREE IS BEST! When companies and websites start up they tend to offer MORE of these upfront. CASH IN WHERE AND WHILE YOU CAN. As they grow these tend to decline FAST.
  1. There is  no ‘gray area’ here – REALLY FREE means no pay per click or income generated for the site at all! This is what you should truly be on the look-out for.
  1. Finding creative ways to market, position, get key demographics and even promotional referral rights are all ways that online internet freebies are oftentimes used to attract attention and get what these providers need (a kind of mutual exchange value proposition)
  1. Advertising often ‘pays’ for or funds these freebies that are offer to the wide masses. Reaching a global audience and getting a bang for the marketing buck is what it is all about. Offering up something for free, seems like an easy ticket and way into tapping that worldwide market in an affordable manner. Making marketing dollars work harder and go further, have us benefiting from these FREE OFFERS ONLINE.
  1. Before being ‘hauled’ and reeled in FOREVER, be on the alert for SPAM (disguised, embedded and infiltration, incognito and stealth-like) Guard your personal information and identity – it is worth a lot on the internet! Some of these FREEBIES do nothing MORE than flood the interested party’s inbox with unwelcome and unsolicited spam, causing annoyance and potentially exposing your computer to harmful viruses and other spyware infestations.
  1. High-volume spammers and installation of  unwanted software like spyware or viruses is rampant in FREEBIES online. When in doubt, DO NOT DOWNLOAD, RATHER PASS!
  1. Shipping costs, rebates and any other type of FREE offer that involved money exchange can be potentially problematic and open to abuse if it deals with personal and financial confidential information. Refrain from sharing these online, be diligent and make informed decisions. There are risks and abuses, fraud, scams and identity thefts, or related online crimes that have been exposed.
  1. There are lots of different types of FREEBIES ON OFFER ONLINE. They could range from:

–        software (fax, email, burners, word processors etc.)
–        gifts from purchases made
–        electronics
–        music samples
–        movies and movie programs
–        quickie items like clothing, household items
–        wireless phones
–        satellite dishes

They could include free samples, rebates, SAE returns, limited trial offers and more.

  1. NO ONE WILL GIVE AWAY THINGS AT NO COST FOR NO REASON! BEWARE OF HIDDEN spam, pop-ups, spyware, adware, viruses and worms
  1. There are definitely some questions you should be asking yourself to protect your online interest and identity and avoid these risks and threats inherent to INTERNET FREEBIES:
  • Is the freebie worth the price that must be paid?
  • Do I have to buy something to get the freebie?
  • How much personal information do they require? (i.e. SSN, credit card info., bank information etc.)
  • Do I have to enter into a contract first?
  • is the freebie standing on its own or is there an added cost to pay?
  • what am I willing to do for my freebie?
  • Why is the site giving out freebies?
  • What’s in it for them?
  1.  There are lots of VERY REAL legitimate INTERNET FREEBIES AROUND that can make your life a lot easier – specifically on the digital download front (zip utilities, browser toolbars, firewalls and more) If you are diligent and read all the agreements, fine-print and reviews online, you can easily take advantage of these and simplify your life.

REMEMBER INTERNET FREEBIES CAN CHANGE, EMPOWER AND ENRICH YOUR LIFE… THERE REALLY ARE REAL TANGIBLE BENEFITS AND ADVANTAGES IF DONE AND USED RIGHT/APPROPRIATELY, WITH CAUTION AND DISCRETION…

  1. You can increase your work productivity with free software downloads
  1. You can communicate in a more efficient way with email, chat and internet phone downloads
  1. You can use free samples as a method of learning about new products that may turn into your favorites
  1. Sometimes you can get extremely good deals with the freebies you find
  1. You can save a lot of time and money. Of course, the given…you really lose nothing insofar as money is concerned.

STAY REALISTICS AND REMEMBER THE RISKS INVOLVED, MANAGE YOUR OWN EXPECTATIONS…

  1.  You may not always get what you wanted
  1. Freebies may contain viruses, spyware and adware
  1. You have to jump through too many hoops to get it
  1. Your freebie may actually wind up costing you money in shipping costs and other fees
  1. You may never actually receive a freebie at all
  1. You may be exposing yourself to identity fraud or spam
  1. FREEBIES ARE MOSTLY ABOUT ONLINE MARKETING! This is the new way the global economy reaches out to prospective clientele worldwide. It is the new way of connecting and transacting. Spreading the word and goods using freebies is a powerful and economical way for providers to operate! IT JUST MAKES SENSE. Get what you want, when you want, but be diligent and cautious BEFORE signing up or entering your information, download anything.
  1. If goes without saying to use reputable, reliable sites with good track record. There are many forums and warnings online to read and sift through.
  1. Free sample sites, web-searches and referral networks are popular ways for you to find the BEST INTERNET FREEBIES ONLINE.
  1.  FOUR ways to get yourself in trouble with online freebies, might include things that are bad for you, bad quality or worse ‘stolen’, proceeds of crime, expired food samples and the like, overpriced package deals, where buy this choice item and get the other one free with loaded prices. Also watch out for FREE TRAILS and ADDITIONAL PURCHASES REQUIRED type advertising. These are no more than bait on a hook to get you into coming back, or spending MORE MONEY! (which is the ultimate goal), which means incoming revenue for them, not necessarily YOUR BEST INTERESTS served well/BEST!
  1.  Filling out the sign up form or sheet is really easy, getting off or removed from lists will be EXTRA hard, complex and near impossible sometimes! ONLY FILL OUT THE ONES YOU ARE REALLY INTERESTED IN AND TRUST. Again read the full agreement thoroughly before clicking on agree or accept!
  1. Build a reference list for yourself for very good freebie websites that you can visit time and again. Your repertoire will expand as time passes and you have successes and failure with INTERNET FREEBIES.
  1.  There are illegal and P2P (peer-to-peer) sharing that are suspect, ongoing and even has legal and prosecutorial implications. Guard and protect yourself and your financial interests, by staying away from or falling prey to these online.

Throughout this text there are numerous examples,  samples and links. There are in no way endorsements or promotional attempts. This guide is intended for informational purposes only.

A CLOSING THOUGHT…

Internet Freebies do not have to be ever-elusive pipe-dreams or an obsessive compulsion. There are many legitimate sites and links offering great products, services, add-ins, value-add, free information to make you life a little easier.

Being informed,  diligent and a little cautious never hurt anyone. We wish you the best with your online hunt for the ultimate FREEBIE!  Good luck and all the best.

PS. Let others know about great deals and ‘share the wealth’ – PASS IT ON and PAY IT FORWARD!

If you want your life to be more rewarding, you have to change the way you think.
Oprah Winfrey (1954 – ), O Magazine

YOUR GUIDE TO INTERNET FREEBIES – Lesson 17: Overview

nextlesson-internetfreebiesNothing in life is guaranteed and 100% safe or free. We oftentimes heard the words of wisdom expressed NOTHING IN LIFE IS FREE or IF IT IS FREE, THERE IS ALWAYS A CATCH, even IF IT SOUNDS TO GOOD TO BE TRUE IT NORMALLY IS…

This clearly shows that we are quite skeptical of anything that lands on our desks, mailbox, online labeled as ‘FREE’. To say the least, we rarely believe or expect it to be actually FREE. We look for the snag right away. It is almost second nature. The internet is to a large extent underlining some of these perceptions, breaking new ground in others, where information sharing is in fact now FREE. Others expect you to pay for things that used to be free and so the cycle and spiral goes, round and round, deeper and deeper.

In and throughout this guide we opted to focus on INTERNET FREEBIES that offer value, incentive and reward. There are numerous ways to make money on the internet and things to look out for. We tried to highlight as many as we can to help you take full advantage of the benefits, mitigate the risk and enjoy what they have to offer.

The range and scope of internet freebies are wide and broadening daily. The human innovation and capacity for new ideas fuel the fire. The internet is the enabling technology that allows us to connect with our collective global fellow human-beings and ‘sharing’ internet freebies is just one new way that we connect and transact as human beings.

It offers the chance to connect, communicate FOR FREE. The internet provides a variety of NO CHARGE items that can enrich and empower your life, yours for the downloading and taking FREE, AT NO COST.

Faxes, live chats, blogs, audio and video downloads, global communication and exchange on a massive scale … and YES some of it is offered FREE. Many try it and increased supply and demand fuel these initiatives and endeavors that quickly grow huge followings and draw massive crowds of supporters and advocates. It is the new global platform and those that are smart enough to tap into it, will not be left behind.

The internet is opportunistic, immediate and provides instant gratification, on demand. It is in pace with our fast-paced lives and now brings us some of the products, services and information FOR FREE. We do not have to pay excessive amounts for things that used to be so expensive just a couple of years ago! Things change and move pretty quickly in this online market as well. Here today, maybe gone in seconds,  or by tomorrow. It is dynamic, aggressive and not for the faint of heart. Yet, it also EASY TO USE and the risks can be managed if you  make it a priority to be a hands-on, informed and empowered consumer.

We will always have wants, needs and desires, the internet peeks and keeps our curiosity. It provides the vehicle to search and find things we never imagines possible a little over a couple of decades ago. FREE offerings are useful marketing tools suppliers and service providers use to secure our interest, business and loyalty for life. Teasers and incentives, hooks and invites, they all qualify and all are fair game in this online hunt for internet freebies!

Pleasure you can not measure or have to pay for, that is the promise and potential of Internet Freebies. They are GREAT (when real) and we all look forward to getting them. Soon, we find out that ringing true to earlier statement FREE sometimes does come with a price tag and some risks.

Inherent,  embedded, unintentional, malicious, deliberate or just for fun, some internet freebies contain viruses for your computer, spyware and the like. Hidden agendas and shipping costs or false claims and misrepresentation are all abuses in this realm of offerings to look out for.

If you keep on trying and scrutinizing you will find something of value and to your liking offered for FREE, sooner or later. Persistence and determined effort will pay off. There are so many promises of FREE things and making money off the internet,  getting your hands on something valuable for no upfront investment, is irresistible to the majority of us.  We really trust this guide provided you with valuable insights, points and reminders to keep in minds as you set our on your own journey and hunt for online Internet freebies.

Some Food for thought on FREE ‘STUFF’, seen from a bit of a philosophical, tongue in cheek commentary of sorts, offered FREE OF CHARGE!!

Free advice is worth the price. Robert Half

The price of freedom of religion, or of speech, or of the press,
is that we must put up with a good deal of rubbish. Robert Jackson

The free expression of the hopes and aspirations of a people is the greatest and
only safety in a sane society.  Emma Goldman (1869 – 1940), Living My Life, 1931

YOUR GUIDE TO INTERNET FREEBIES – Lesson 16: Peer to Peer Filesharing Tips

nextlesson-internetfreebiesPeer to peer networks are called this because it is basically the way the files are gotten in the first place. How this works is that any file that is executable on your computer can be shared with other people’s computers. The most popular forms of p2p networks is those that offer music and movies.

File sharing can be dangerous as you can imagine, Below you’ll get a variety of safe file sharing tips that are designed to help protect you if you choose to use a peer to peer file sharing network. However just to let you know again that the only way to guarantee 100% safe downloading online is by using a legal or small payment site.

Note: Legal music download sites have come a long way over the years and have succeeded at giving people excellent download quality, cheap music solutions and improved music selections to choose from. Most also give you a free music trial for trying them out.

Of course since no one knows exactly what the RIAA will sue next, the file sharing tips offered below do not guarantee that you will have a safe file sharing and do not guarantee becoming a target of the Recording Industry yourself someday. They are provided for you as useful tips and suggestions only because in the end when using a p2p file sharing application online you just never know.

Here are some safe P2P file sharing tips and useful suggestions:

1) Watch your music file size.

Basically the RIAA sued people who shared at least 1,000 songs or more. As a safety measure, and to be sure you less likely to be a target, either keep your music collection fairly small or move your music files to a non-shared folder so that they are harder to track.

After you download music, simply move the files out of the folder you designated as your shared music folder to like media player or something like that. This is not a fool-proof solution, but could be helpful in avoiding becoming a target of the RIAA.

2) Use file sharing privacy protection features.

The RIAA has mainly sued file swappers who made their own files available to others for download. Basically the music companies target users who only download music, many file sharing networks (like kazaa lite) have features that allow you to turn off the file sharing option.

However you should know that in using the file sharing privacy protection features you should be safe but doing this will not provide complete protection from the RIAA.

3) Learn all you can about a P2P file sharing program first.

Check out the file sharing site thoroughly to try to get important details and information from them such as;

  1. How does the P2P site operate
  2. Is the file program free of adware, spyware, trojans, etc.
  3. Do they provide customer service
  4. Do they offer legal P2P advice and prevention tips.
  5. If you can’t get your questions and concerns answered from the website, you should email them and ask.

Needless to say, if you choose to use a p2p file sharing program, I would  strongly recommend that you read the site’s entire security and privacy section. The file sharing networks have suggestions & tips on how to stay safe while downloading files online.

4) Know the risks involved with file sharing beforehand.

Due to the huge pile of people downloading Trojans and other malware from p2p networks, reports estimate that virus attacks, disruptive worms and security threats will just keep going.  If you have ever downloaded freeware or shareware before then the odds of having adware and spyware on your PC is extremely likely.

When you are downloading files online from unknown places to you, it’s extremely important that you keep your virus-checking software up-to-date. Using Norton and mcafee is a great way to start. Just note that many of these programs don’t work with firewalls.

5) Check out privacy protection software.

It’s a well known fact that technology evolves as the designers needs do. And many p2p file sharers use safe sharing software programs designed to help protect their online identity by keeping their IP addresses and surfing habits anonymous.

However, even privacy protection software can’t assure you total anonymity online.  Controversy about copyright infringement laws continues to surround the use of P2P file sharing online. Of course, if you are really worried, just don’t do it.

YOUR GUIDE TO INTERNET FREEBIES – Lesson 15: Peer to Peer Networks

nextlesson-internetfreebiesWhen it comes to peer to peer networks, it is the most popular way for most of us to get free music, movies and software. These are not like the freebies that I mentioned before. These methods are basically illegal ways of getting the most popular and recent of any of these things.

You can get movies that haven’t even hit DVDs yet. Of course if you get caught you will be in trouble. Some people find that the trouble is worth it. I don’t but you never know. For all of the illegal peer to peer networks there are, you can find a legal one too. Some of the most popular peer to peer free network programs are:

–      Gnutella
–      eDonkey
–      Morpheus
–      Kazaa
–      LimeWire
–      Xolox
–      Shareza

Of course there are legal ones too. These often require a small payment per CD or song/movie/and software. These are free because they have the permission from the companies that they receive the songs from. Some have special deal with these companies to advertise their new things. Some of them give you free downloads with the purchase of the new ones. Some of the paid sites are:

–      iTunes
–      Songclassics
–      New Napster
–      Coolcds
–      Cdplanet
–      MTV

As cool as it sounds to get and use free file sharing programs like those mentioned above, you should know that there are some dangers to using them as well as wonderful downloads. Here is a short list of some of the dangers involved in using p2p networks for freebies:

–      Some downloads aren’t what they say they are
–      There is x-rated stuff to be found in them as well, and they are often listed as normal stuff
–      Files may be of poor quality
–      Files may contain spyware/adware
–      Files may contain viruses or worms
–      Files may not be complete
–      Some force you to share files as well which is how many people get caught
–      Some require payment over time
–      Files may be corrupted or duplicate
–      Files may not open on their own as they should

YOUR GUIDE TO INTERNET FREEBIES – Lesson 14: When Freebies are Illegal

nextlesson-internetfreebiesIllegal internet freebies is what is generally referred to as piracy. Piracy is a huge problem all over the Internet. It cost the software industry alone about $12 billion last year. Here are the different categories of piracy going on today that takes money directly out of the hands of the owners and creators.

Some of these things include: software piracy of programs and PC games, digital music in the MP3 format of full albums or singles, full length movies of movies playing in theatres and movies released on DVD and VHS, old video games that now play as ROMs on software as well as console games that must be burned to a CD to play on the new console, and all the cracks going around that stop free trial periods.

The first of the above categories that was first to be pirated was the software of programs and PC games. This is was available because of Software cracks which have definitely played a big role in this, because in order to use the software a user can just have a key generated by the crack so they can avoid paying the programmers who created the software by adding the crack that tells the programmer that it was paid for.

There are many search engines out there that allow people to search for cracks in the many databases. This was common back in the time when CD’s weren’t as popular and when programs and games were simple enough and small enough to fit on a floppy disk.

Now however the CD is very common and software and games have become complicated enough to take up as much as 650MB on a CD. Crack hacks have found a way around the CD protection and because of this we now have isos. They are the exact extracted programs that were on the CD but are now compressed and on your hard drive instead.

The 600MB worth of files then has to be burned to a CD and will usually need another crack before it will be able to work. You probably won’t find isos in the public Internet like other freebies as no one wants to get caught. You’ll have to search newsgroups and BBSs or link in to the underground FTP if you want to trade to get them.

It’s a common thing for people’s entire software and game collection to be nothing other than burned copies these days. It’s a tempting thing that’s hard to resist, especially when you look at the price tags that accompany them. A friend can burn an iso to a CD for $5 whereas the companies out there will charge hundreds for theirs.

The rest of the categories for piracy are things like music, movies and console games have only experienced widespread Internet piracy in the past three years or so. With computer processing speeds getting faster and faster, hard drive capacities are growing and Internet bandwidth speed growing; movies, music and console games have been there.

Nowadays, you can get a movie that is currently playing in theatres and have it burned to a CD and be watched in a CD-ROM or DVD player for no cost other than that of the price of the cd you are burning the movie onto. You can also get computer software and play most any game for the N64 system or any of the older systems like the Super Nintendo, playstation and Xbox.

If you’d rather be current and up to date you can get Sony PlayStation, PlayStation 2 or Sega Dreamcast games burned very easily. These games are big and have to be burned to a CD for you to be able to play it on your new console. In the case of the Sony PlayStation, there is some extra hardware needed for you to play your pirated games, in the form of internal or external mod chips, which just goes to show you that they are smart enough to capitalize off of you.

It would be hard to find movies and console games in the public Internet, however there are various programs now that do the searching for you. The piracy and distribution of music is a different story altogether. The MP3 is a compressed version of a WAV file that you’d find on your music CD.

With its small size and good quality, the creation of the MP3 12 or 15 years ago has made music the most pirated thing on the Internet nowadays. Unlike movies and games, you can find MP3 music almost everywhere. There are web sites with 100’s of full albums that you can access simply with a banner click.

It’s a big network of people sharing music and has sparked the most controversy and these are called peer to peer networks. High profile musicians like Metallica and Dr. Dre have publicly launched lawsuits against Napster for distributing their music. That is okay because there are many others who are replacing napster anyways and they are far better.

Besides the collecting aspect, people have most enjoyed MP3’s for burning to mix CD’s. especially since today’s equipment ables MP3 players, car MP3 hard drives, stereo top MP3 players, and CD players that decodes MP3s while they play off of a burned CD.

Piracy over the Internet is almost impossible to stop. One reason is because there are no Internet laws that can be upheld, with privacy issues coming into play. Web sites that distribute pirated software, games, music and movies can be found and shut down but charges may never be laid which will just garner the web owners fines etc.

Pirated music, movies or games is just plain illegal and they are freebies that are extremely sought after. Some websites offer you free items like these legally because they get them from the companies so that the companies can get free advertising for their newer things.

Programs that hunt these pirated things down include Kazzaa, Morpheus, and Warez. They all offer free software, games and music illegally. If this sounds okay to you go ahead, but remember that you really are stealing and so are they!

YOUR GUIDE TO INTERNET FREEBIES – Lesson 13: Internet Freebie Myths

nextlesson-internetfreebiesUnfortunately with all of the great freebies you will find in life there are many of them to be found on the internet. The problem is that many people are convinced that there are too many down sides to getting free stuff online. As you might guess, I have encountered my share of skeptics who take the cynical stance that nothing in this life is free. Here are many of the myths that the skeptics mistake for obvious truths and my considered views on them:

1) There is no such thing as a free lunch.

This is often true, but not as much as everyone thinks. The statement means you pay for everything one way or another in the end. I will agree that this is technically true most of the time. But this doesn’t stop me from looking for freebies anyway, but every request for free offers or registration for a free service takes some time and some effort as well as giving up some privacy. However, I will say that if you have the time, enjoy doing it, and are careful the cost becomes negligible.

2) You can’t get anything worth having for free.

I will admit that most free offers are not particularly valuable. But then again, once in a while some pretty cool free offers show up in the strangest places. I’ve received free brand-name running shoes, free coffee makers, free software, free computer parts, a free DVD player, and much more, this is not a lie. Even the little freebies are fun and should not be ignored. I never have a shortage of travel size shampoo or toothpaste and I love collecting little trinkets like key rings, coffee mugs, and the like.

3) Registering for freebies ensures that you will get spam.

Actually, the surest way to get spam is to have an email address at all. It doesn’t necessarily mean that the freebie is to blame. actually it is easy to avoid getting your main email address on spam lists because of freebies. Never use your main email address for that purpose. I suggest having at least two junk email accounts that deal with these. Use one for low risk offers that need verification and use the other for offers of higher spam risk.

4) A free offer is a free offer

Unfortunately, there are many free offers out there that are not worth your time, because they are free. Many people get sucked into freebies because they are free. That is just pointless.

5) Everything on the Internet is free.

Some people make the mistake of thinking any graphic or any text that they can find on the Internet is free for them use as they see fit. The downside is that some of these things are not actually free at all. Unless the author states that the content is free, it is not. Be smart enough to check the copyrights and terms of service before you subscribe to internet freebies.

6) Free magazines are too much of a hassle

That may be true when it comes to the free trial offers from magazines, so you should look for full free subscriptions and always check to make sure the offer has not changed or become void. Publishers frequently offer free subscriptions as a way to increase circulation to sell more and higher priced advertisements.

7) All the good free services ended with the dot com bust.

While it is true that many of the best of these ended as financial reality set in with the dot com craze, but there has been a resurgence. You just have to take some time and find the right ones.

8) Free software is not as good as purchased ones.

That may have been true at one time, but we are in a new era where open source and other free software has gained much more respect and are fully featured. For example, I use the OpenOffice.org suite in my home office exclusively. Why pay Microsoft, when I can get the same functionality and often less bugs for free?

9) There is no harm in requesting a free offer often.

I hate to say it, but there are many people who think this way. Most offers either come right out and say or imply that you may only make one request per person or household for a reason. Being greedy and requesting multiples is considered fraud and my land you in legal trouble.

10) If you want legal music you have to pay for it.

This may be true for most current popular artists, but thee are tens of thousands of free music selections out there that are indeed free. Before you spend all your money on iTunes, you should check out free music resources first.

YOUR GUIDE TO INTERNET FREEBIES – Lesson 12: Freebie Websites

nextlesson-internetfreebiesThere wouldn’t be a point in writing about internet freebies without including some very good freebie websites that you can visit. These sites provide some excellent freebies for you to sift through.

Free Stuff Central

This is a very popular free stuff site, with loads of cool things for those who are looking for cheap and frees tuff online. Many categories, including books, catalogs, CD-ROMs, contests, coupons, digital postcards, E-mail, Web space, magazines, pet stuff, phone cards, screen savers, software, and a whole lot more.

FreebieDirectory.com

This is a fun site that offers loads of new freebies every day. Each freebie is reviewed thoroughly for you and offers here include free product samples, contests, games, sounds, graphics, freeware and tons more. They even have their own search engine, so you can quickly find what you need.

Freeware Files.com

This is a nicely-organized, and information-packed site, that gives you hundreds of free software for Windows. There’s also a good selection of Net tools, utilities, programming files, Windows libraries and drivers, as well as free online Java games. their “What’s Hot” and “Top Ten”  are great features for a handy snapshot of the Web’s latest must-have freeware.

Fat Cat Freebies

This is a regularly updated freebie directory that offers a good selection of free offers. Categories include books & magazines, condoms, DVDs, fun freebies, health & beauty items, samples, student freebies, and more.

FreeBeeClub.com

If you have got something you’re about to throw away you should turn to this handy website first because this free service, looks to link people who’re looking for free stuff with those who have items they need to get rid of. You must be 18 or older to use this service. FreeBeeClub.com covers cities in the U.S., Canada, Australia, and mainland China.

KingFreebie.com

This new site offers a wide variety of family-oriented freebie items, including merchandise that you can earn when you sign up for sponsor offers. It is a good resource for finding G-rated stuff the whole family can enjoy.

Free-Stuff.com

This site offers you thousands of family-related freebie offers. Categories include catalogs, contests, coupons, entertainment, magazines, personal finance and more.

FreebiesPlanet.com

This site offers somewhere around 60 different categories of freebies and is regularly updated. Some of the Categories that are listed here include beauty and health items, CDs, clipart, clothes, family stuff, fonts, music, posters, recipes, videos, Web space and more.

Active-Freebies.com

This is a nicely designed freebies site that offers a variety of different family-oriented offers. Free stuff categories here include arts & crafts, books, clothing, education, fonts, graphics, health items, samples, sweeps, Webmaster tools and more.

FreebieRoundup.com

This new site basically brings together new freebie listings from free stuff sites across the Web. The site is regularly updated and loads quickly.

Absolutely Freebies

This is an excellent resource, offering lots of free Net resources for Webmasters, as well as a general user. Here, you’ll find lots of goodies, such as contests, magazines, screen savers, Internet gaming, E-mail accounts, catalogs and more. Webmasters will find promotional tips, as well as free goodies to enhance their sites.

All-4-Free Freebie Tree

This is one of the largest free stuff directories on the Web today, this site is updated on a daily basis. Categories at this site include baby items, catalogs, contests, coupons, fonts, graphics, health items, Net access, games, software, Web space and more.

Free -n- Cool

This is a fast-loading, and neatly organized and just plain wonderful website, and Free -n- Cool has all the attributes of one of the best selling freebies site. You can get samples to gifts to sweepstakes and more here. The site lives up to its name, as well: besides freebies, you’ll find plenty of cool links to browse.

CompletelyFreeSoftware.com

This site offers a very strong collection of freeware that is fun to browse. Each listing is reviewed and rated for you. Freeware around here includes programs for Windows, as well as DOS. Categories here include text editors, graphics programs, games, utilities, multimedia programs and more. Note: this site has begun charging a membership fee for access.

FreebieSpace.com

This is a nicely designed site offers a good variety of freebie offers, including free product samples and free trial offers. The site also has a free newsletter, if you are interested in staying posted on the latest free offers.

SweetFreeStuff.com

This is a freebies directory that offers reviews of free items in many categories, including books, catalogs, coupons, E-mail, fonts, games, graphics, greeting cards, magazines, samples, software, Webmaster tools, and more.

Free Center

This site is a good, solid site that offers freebies for both Webmasters, as well as a regular surfers. Webmaster tools in here range from counters to graphics to free home pages. For everyone else, there’s lots of freebies including contests, sound files, freeware and more. All offers are rated for you as well.

RealFreeSite.com

This freebies directory that offers 60 categories, as well as a search engine, so you can quickly find what you need. Free stuff sections here include chat services, contests, digital cards, fonts, games, graphics, MP3 files, samples, Webmaster tools and more.

Digital Free Stuff

This is a great place to get free stuff offers, including Web freebies, product samples and free goodies for Webmasters. Each offer is reviewed and rated.

Best Free Stuff Online.com

Here is a freebies site that offers stuff for the whole family. Content includes freebies for moms, freebies for dads, pet freebies, as well as computer freebies, sweepstakes and more.

FreeStuffConnection.com

This site offers a wide variety of free offers for everyone, as well as Webmasters. Freebie categories around here include computer items, coupons, entertainment, magazines, samples and more.

Free Stuff Place

This site offers a wide variety of various freebies. Here, you’ll find free catalogs, CD-ROMs, E-mail services, fonts, freeware, magazines, screen savers and more.

Only Free

This freebie directory offers a large selection of various free items, including free product samples, free services and family freebies. Offers here include mouse pads, gifts, DVDs and more.

EZ-Freebies.com

This is a freebies site that offers lots of helpful enhancements such as a search engine and a feature that lets you create a personalized list of your favorite freebie bookmarks.

GraphicsFreebies.com

This site ranks the Web’s top free graphics resources by the number of votes they’ve received from their visitors. Each site is reviewed and the index is updated throughout the day.

FreeandFun.com

This site offers a variety of free services and products. Free stuff categories here include computer stuff, contests, coupons, family freebies, magazines, samples and trial offers.

CheapFree.com

This is a different and fun freebie site, these people categorize their offerings into four broad sections: “New Stuff,” “Cool Stuff,” “Crappy Stuff” and “Useless Stuff.” This is just plain cool and worth a look.

AAAFreebies.com

This is a fast-growing new resource that offers a lot of freebies, as well as a handy search engine. Free stuff categories here include coupons, contests, fonts, graphics, postcards, product samples, screen savers, sounds, Webmaster freebies and more.

1Freestuff.com

Here, you can find freebies, including books, computer items, cooking items, entertainment, phone offers, samples, screen savers and Webmaster tools.

BestDealsOnTheWeb.net

This is a good place to go if you’re looking for freebies or cheapies on the Web. The site offers a regularly-updated collection of free samples, freeware, contests, money-saving offers, coupns and more.

AAAScreenSavers.com

This site is one of my fave’s for the Web’s top freeware screen savers. Screen saver categories here include anime, art, cartoons, computers, fantasy, games, holidays, horror & occult, movies, nature, religious, sci-fi, sports, TV and more.

Free2Try

This site is cool with a plethora of freebie offers. You name it, and it’s here: free samples, contests, free catalogs, gift certificates, free magazines, freeware, opportunities for earning cash and much more.

Freebietools

Here is a directory of various freebie offers and Webmaster resources, including free Web space services, Javascripts, affiliate programs, redirection services, freeware and more.

FreeGraphicLand.com

Here’s an index of Webmaster-related sites, that is ranked by the number of votes they’re received from visitors. Site categories here include graphics, JavaScript, CGI, CCS and HTML.

Cool Freebie Links

This site has a huge list of the Web’s freebies sites. Here, you get detailed reviews of each freebies resource. The reviews detail what the site is about, how it’s laid out and what pitfalls you may find there. There’s a lot here to explore.

ChristmasFreebies.com

This festive site offers a big collection of Christmas-themed freebies for all ages. Items here include free gifts, samples, yuletide contests, Christmas-themed software, children’s freebies, and other items.

ValentinesDayFreebies.com

This is a cool place for all things free on Valentine’s Day. Here, you’ll find free Valentine’s Day related samples, gifts, contests, games, screen savers, greeting cards, children’s freebies and more

Cnet.com

This extremely popular website offers many freebies like software, mp3’s, downloads, utilities, and way more. These downloads are rated and have consumer reviews to help you choose the right ones

Download.com

This site offers customer reviews, ratings, on their free software which includes screensavers, programs, games, utilities and much more. This is actually the site I visit the most.

YOUR GUIDE TO INTERNET FREEBIES – Lesson 11: Know Your Freebie Downloads

nextlesson-internetfreebiesWhen it comes to downloading internet freebies like software, music, screensavers etc., it helps to know these freebies before you bother. You will want to get your downloads from a reputable site; preferably one that offers customer reviews.

If your website, such as download.com or cnet.com offers these, then read all of the customers comments so that you can be prepared beforehand for whatever happens. Also, if you are looking for absolutely freeware, you will have to check the license area of the description. To be sure that you are in fact getting a freebie, you will want to be sure that the license says freeware or free. If it says demo or trial, it will not be free.  Let’s look at those more closely.

FREEWARE

This is software programs that are completely free, which means that you will never have to pay for them. These are the most popular software freebies on the net. Of course they have their advantages and disadvantages too. Lets look at these right now!

ADVANTAGES

–      Naturally it is free

–      It often has many features that paid versions offer

–      They are easy to install/remove

–      They often include free upgrades

DISADVANTAGES

–      Some can be tricky, and actually be trials not totally free

–      Some are lacking in features

–      Many require paid versions in order to receive full features

–      Some contain ad/spyware, viruses and worms

–      Some are simply not what they claim to be.

YOUR GUIDE TO INTERNET FREEBIES – Lesson 10: Filling Out the Freebie Form

nextlesson-internetfreebiesOK, you are ready to get some free samples or sign up for free services at some website, but you just aren’t used to filling out online forms or you just want a quick heads up about them. Since we now know that most of these freebies sites will require you to fill out these forms, you might as well see them and get some quick tips about it first. All you have to do is just follow the steps below and you should have no problems.

Here is what to do for your forms:

  1. Move your mouse over the first field in the form and click it.
  2. Type in the information that is being asked.
  3. Either user your tab key to move to the next field or click your mouse in the next field.
  4. Continue until you have filled out all the required fields.
  5. There will be a button that tells you to submit. Move your mouse cursor over the button and click once.
  6. Do not click a second time. Some forms take a few seconds to a minute or more to process.
  7. You are now finished and can go on to find another free offer and repeat the whole process on another form.

Quick Tips:

  1. Most forms mark the absolutely necessary fields with an asterisk or bold text. The others you can simply ignore you will move faster that way.
  2. Some fields may use a select arrow to allow you to choose from a list of answers (drop down menu). Let the list choose for you. If it is not listed click the other tab.

YOUR GUIDE TO INTERNET FREEBIES – Lesson 9: Avoiding the Costly Freebies

nextlesson-internetfreebiesIf you still think that all online freebies will help you to stretch your budget you have not been listening. Sometimes they will and others will not. The fact is that you have to learn to avoid the following costly freebies:

Unhealthy foods-

If you really think that the free bag of chips that you got after redeeming a coupon or that package of cookies that you got as part of a buy one get one free deal sounded like a great way to save money you may have to think again. What about the hidden cost? Often times the foods that are easiest to obtain for free but they can also be the worst for your health.

Before you start stocking up on any food freebie, you really need to think about that. Being offered free food online doesn’t even make sense. You have to ask yourself some key questions here, such as:

  1. How far does this food have to travel to get to me?
  2. Why is this food being offered for free?
  3. Is this from a viable local restaurant near me, or is this to be delivered to me at my home?
  4. Is this food past its expiration date?
  5. What type of offer am I getting in order for the food to be free?
  6. Is this food perishable?

These are just common sense questions that everyone should ask before accepting free potentially perishables. You should also consider the cost of losing weight before you decide to accept a food freebie. Gym memberships and diet programs are far from free and your health could be at risk in eating something for free that you got on the internet.

Items that require additional purchases

That coupon for a free usually expensive watch can be a real eye catcher when it appears on your favorite search engine, but is it really a good deal? Maybe not if it means you’ll have to buy  expensive batteries so that you can use it.

The point here is that before you decide to participate in a freebie offer that will require an added purchase (such as a watch that will need batteries or a bottle of shampoo that will require the purchase of conditioner) stop to consider what your out-of-pocket expenses are going to be. You may just find that you come out better by purchasing your normal brands, and skipping the high cost freebies all together.

Free trials

A free 30-day trial to an online movie rental service like Netflix or even a cheap online service can sound pretty worth it when you aren’t able to afford the luxury of a full-time subscription for that magazine. However, this type of freebie can get expensive extremely quickly. Since many trial offers have the tendency to automatically turn into paid subscriptions when you don’t call or write the company to cancel, you could find yourself with an unexpected bill down the road.

Before you decide to accept any trial offers that you might come across you really have to look over the agreement to be sure you find the terms agreeable. Of course, if you decide to go forward with any deal that requires a cancellation to be rid of it, be sure to mark your calendar; and call before the trial period is up otherwise you will be getting that bill or debit from your credit card or bank. Being even a day late in canceling could result in a monthly or even a yearly membership fee. So BEWARE!

High end stuff that are free with purchase

these are my favorite potential dangers because they are easy to get sucked into. These are things that “Buy a computer, get a free monitor or printer and camera”; spend $60, get a $15 gift card; buy a cell phone at full price get another for free!

All of these sound like great deals at first, but they may cost you more than you think. Before you get sucked into this type of freebie offer, you need to stop and calculate how much you’ll have to spend in order for you to receive your free item.

If you do this you may just find that you could get a computer and monitor someplace else for less than what you’ll have to pay for a computer at the freebie spot.

You should also check to see whether or not the purchase item and the incentive item are things that you truly need and will get a lot of use out of. Too often people allow free with purchase incentives to persuade them to buy items that they would probably never buy otherwise and that is just silly.

The bottom line with this is that a freebie offer shouldn’t cost you money because that completely negates the fact of it being free in the first place. Consider each deal that you are offered carefully before you bother. Otherwise, you will end up with a lot of free stuff that actually cost you an arm and a leg.